On Sundays, We worship together at 10:30 a.m. & 6 p.m.
The service is Holy Eucharist, Rite II, which means that it is a communion service in modern language from the 1979 Book of Common Prayer. We always want newcomers and visitors to join us. At Church of Our Saviour, communion is open to everyone–no exceptions.
What to Expect
Church of Our Saviour sits on the corner of Crosby Street and Oakdale Avenue. When you enter the church through the entrance on Oakdale (the sidestreet) you’ll be greeted by a greeter or usher who will give you a bulletin that contains the order of the service. If it’s your first time with us, you’ll be given a welcome bag with some information and goodies. The bag also helps us know that you are new so that we can get to know you. Sit wherever you feel comfortable–there are no assigned seats, and you’re not taking anyone’s “spot.” You will be met by friendly smiles and warm embraces.
Worship usually begins when bells are rung and the choir, priest and others leading worship (acolytes) process up the center aisle.
During the service, we use the Book of Common Prayer, which is the red book in the pew rack. The 1982 Hymnal, with the music and words to most of the songs we sing, is the blue book. Sometimes we also sing out of the green paperback book called Wonder, Love and Praise or the red and black book called Lift Every Voice and Sing II: An African American Hymnal in the pew.
If you want help following the service, please ask anyone sitting around you anytime during the service. People who are able stand up and sit down a lot during worship, and some people kneel at certain times. You can do what is comfortable for you, follow the directions in the bulletin, or do what other people around you do. Don’t worry that you’re going to do something wrong, because no one is here to judge you.
The first part of the service is called the Liturgy of the Word, and it includes prayers, readings from the Bible, and hymns. Toward the middle of the service, we pass the peace, and people get up and move around the church to greet each other in the name of Christ. After that, people who want to ask special prayers go to the front of the church. It’s our custom to ask for special prayers for birthdays, sobriety anniversaries, relationship and wedding anniversaries, illness, new jobs, hard times–any occasion you can imagine. If you’d like the congregation to pray for you, please come forward.
The second part of the service is the Eucharist, also called communion. Everyone is welcome to receive communion. Ushers will let you know when it is time to go forward to the altar at the front of the church. There are steps, so if you’d rather have the priest bring you communion at your seat, just let the usher know. Communion includes bread and wine, but we believe that you have participated fully in the sacrament if you receive only one element. So, if you prefer not to drink wine, you are welcome to take communion with bread only. If you’d like to come forward for communion but not take bread or wine, just cross your arms over your chest and the priest will bless you.
“Everyone is welcome at God’s table” isn’t a catch phrase at COOS, it‘s an expression of inclusion that is displayed with abundance and love by those in attendance.
After communion, the service concludes with a prayer and dismissal from the priest or a deacon if one is present. The priest stands at the back of the church to greet people after the service. Everyone is invited to the parish hall for coffee, tea, lemonade and cookies after the service. And if it is the last Sunday of the month, aka Hot Dog Sunday, everyone is invited to the parish hall for hot dogs, snacks and conversation. Please join us–we want to welcome you and get to know you.
Children of all ages are always welcome in church and to receive communion. You’ll find a shelf of toys and games at the back of the church that you’re welcome to take to your seat. We expect children to make noise and delight in it.
Young children are invited, but not required, to attend Children’s Chapel during the sermon. Some children stay with their families for the entire service while others like to go to Children’s Chapel. Please make whatever choice is best for your family.
Contemplative Worship at 6 p.m.
This more intimate, less formal style of worship gives us the opportunity to worship together if we are unable to attend the earlier service. Here’s how one member described it: “I found Contemplative Eucharist on Sunday evenings to be an opportunity to worship in a smaller group in a relaxed and less structured manner. This intimate, streamed lined service gave me the opportunity to stay focused on the lesson and reflect on readings. I welcome the opportunity to have a choice in which service to attend. This flexibility is just another example of how accommodating COOS can be,” – Kevin M.